CHICAGO – Standing up at the Lyric Opera house in Chicago is unusual before a show. But in this case, it was the night after a tragedy, and the operetta “The Merry Widow” – set in Paris, France, in 1905 – was about to unfold. The orchestra struck up La Marseillaise, a reminder that we’ll always have Paris.
CHICAGO – Few major films have felt less creatively inspired and more commercially conceived than Alan Taylor’s dull “Thor: The Dark World,” a wannabe blockbuster with all the personality and ingenuity of a straight-to-DVD sequel.
CHICAGO – If television shows were deemed a success or failure based on the number of emails, comments, and call-ins to radio shows that were sent on their behalf, NBC’s “Chuck” would be one of the biggest programs of the last two decades. Every time we wrote about it or discussed it on the radio show, people got excited. The show didn’t have many fans, but they were LOYAL and that’s why it stayed on the air much longer than it should have based on pure ratings numbers and that’s why WB has treated fans right through five Blu-ray releases.
CHICAGO – There have been a number of casualties of the debacle of “The Jay Leno Show” but one has to believe that were NBC not in such dire straits when it comes to ratings (an increasingly depressing situation for the network with new lows nearly every week) that “Chuck” would have been canceled years ago. The program has been on “bubble watch” since its first season, when it dipped below 60th place in the weekly ratings. And yet here we are, reviewing the fifth-season premiere of the show that simply wouldn’t die.
CHICAGO – We won’t know for sure until Sunday at the earliest (when NBC holds a press conference call about their official Monday fall schedule announcement), but several outlets are reporting that, drum roll please, “Chuck” is coming back. The annual bubble show that this critic predicted would get the death-sentence reprieve has been saved yet again.
CHICAGO – There are very few animated movies that look as stunning as “Tangled” does on Blu-ray. The grass of the land around Rapunzel’s tower, her infamous hair, even the leaves floating in the background — the film has a third dimension even on a standard television. It’s visually striking.
CHICAGO – In our latest Blu-ray/DVD combo pack edition of the HollywoodChicago.com Hookup, we have 5 Blu-ray and DVD combo packs up for grabs to “Tangled” with Mandy Moore!
CHICAGO – Movieland is awash in feature length “cartoons,” with virtually every season cranking out more new entries in this new golden age of animation. The Disney Studios, the grandaddy of the genre, aims to keep the bar high with its latest, the amazing looking and hilarious 3D version of the Rapunzel story, with a post modern title of “Tangled.”
CHICAGO – After a second season that saw already-low ratings decline, NBC took a chance by bringing “Chuck” back for a third, shortened season. As the network has struggled this year due to a number of horrible decisions (most of them related to Jay Leno), most of its lineup has been hit. Let’s hope “Chuck” bucks the trend because this cult hit has arguably never been better.